Judge Phil Ginn: ‘Even in the face of persecution, which is sure to come, God’s faithful people must rise up with righteous and revolutionary ardor’
October 31, 2022
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A recent Barna poll revealed some troubling news for the American Church. The majority of Evangelicals claim to be more impacted by economic issues like gas prices and inflation than cultural issues like abortion and religious freedom. Regarding the upcoming General Election, 61% of those surveyed said that “inflation and rising cost of living” will have “a lot” of influence on their votes, while only 46% felt the same way about abortion and only 36% on the concept of religious freedom.
Judge Phil Ginn, president of Southern Evangelical Seminary (SES, www.ses.edu), responded to these concerning statistics, claiming that the apathy towards the moral decay of the country from American Evangelicals indicates a nationwide spiritual decline.
“A new survey overseen by Evangelical pollster George Barna indicates that economic issues like inflation and gas prices will have more impact on Evangelical voters in the upcoming elections than cultural issues like abortion and religious freedom,” Ginn commented. “These findings are not surprising, nor do they indicate any new trends, for it has seemingly always been so.
“Unfortunately, even Christians in America are driven more by the ‘personal impact of government’ than they are the eternally crucial issues of the day and of their faith. That is how evil takes hold and flourishes within a governmental system, and it is precisely what is happening in the United States. It was Plato who said, ‘The price good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men.’ We are fast approaching — if we have not already crossed — this point of no return in our nation.”
Ginn continued, “Many who claim kinship with Christ as His followers are participating in their own ‘age of the shrug’ and have become indifferent to those things which are dear to the heart of God. While many unconcerned believers in the so-called ‘mainline denominations’ in America have gone about their daily lives in individual and national pursuit of prosperity and ease, evil has taken a strong foothold in America. Now it is spreading like the COVID virus but with greater deadly intent, at least in a true spiritual sense. The result is that this land that we love is ‘rolling downhill like the proverbial snowball headed for hell.’
“I hear so often from so many people the question of ‘what can we as Christians do?’ and even the more poignant heartfelt cry, ‘Do you think it’s too late?’ Are we in America just like the days of Ezekiel, where in chapter 22, the prophet laments on behalf of God: ‘I looked for anyone to repair the wall and stand in the gap for me on behalf of the land, so I would not have to destroy it. But I found no one?’ My only response to these essential queries is simply this: true Christ followers need to fall on our knees in repentance for our quest for comfortableness in ambivalent disregard or pure ignorance of God’s call on our hearts to be ‘children of light’ in His world. To paraphrase lines from Archibald MacLeish’s J. B., ‘The lights in the churches have all gone out — let us blow on the candle of the heart, and we will see by and by.’
“This then is the heart of the matter. Even in the face of persecution, which is sure to come, God’s faithful people must rise up with righteous and revolutionary ardor in this clarifying moment of revelation, and only in doing so can the answers to these eternally crucial questions be found.
“At SES, we have heard the clarion call of Christ on our hearts, and though none go with us, we have chosen to follow our Lord Jesus and to remain steadfast in the Truth. God help us as followers of Christ if we neglect such a great salvation as is ours in such a moment as this.”
Judge Phil Ginn was appointed president of SES in April 2021 after a distinguished career as both a lawyer and a judge. Over the course of his 22-year judicial career, he was privileged to hold court in almost 50% of the county seats in North Carolina. He holds a B.A. from Appalachian State University, a J.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and a Doctor of Ministry from Southern Evangelical Seminary. Prior to his appointment as SES president, Judge Ginn served as SES Chairman of the Board of Trustees.
The mission of SES is to train men and women, based on the inerrant and infallible written Word of God, for the evangelization of the world and the defense of the historic Christian faith. SES offers a range of undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees (along with several for-credit certificates) that uniquely integrate theology, philosophy, and apologetics to build a complete and systematic Christian worldview.